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Joe Biden: So hot right now

Almost 6 in 10 Americans have a favorable opinion about Joe Biden in a ...

Posted: Dec 22, 2017 3:01 PM
Updated: Dec 22, 2017 3:01 PM

Almost 6 in 10 Americans have a favorable opinion about Joe Biden in a new CNN national poll, a finding sure to give the Democratic former vice president a boost as he considers whether to run for president in 2020.

The 57% favorable rating is Biden's best in CNN polling since February 2009 -- when he was sworn in as Barack Obama's vice president. Just over 1 in 4 (27%) have an unfavorable view of Biden.

What's remarkable about those numbers is how Biden's favorability has surged since he (and Obama) left office. As recently as March 2015, CNN polling showed more people viewed Biden unfavorably (46%) than regarded him favorably (43%).

Related: Full poll results

The recovery of Biden's numbers stands in stark contrast to the ongoing negative view that Americans hold of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party's 2016 presidential nominee; in Gallup polling released earlier this week, Clinton's favorable rating dipped to 36%.

What explains Biden's current popularity? A few things:

  • He drew hugely laudatory coverage earlier this year for his book tour in support of his memoir about the loss of his eldest son, Beau.
  • Politicians -- with the notable exception of Clinton (of late) -- always grow more popular when out of office.
  • Some level of buyer's remorse -- particularly among Democrats -- who believe that had Biden run in 2016, he would have easily beaten Donald Trump.

Biden has been open about his thinking on running for president in 2020, which would be his third bid for the nation's highest office. "If I were offered the nomination by the Lord Almighty right now, today, I would say no because we're not ready, the family's not ready to do this," Biden said on "The View" earlier this month. "If, in a year from now, if we're ready, and nobody has moved in that I think can do it, then I may very well do it."

While Biden has made no decisions, he's doing the sorts of things someone running for president does in these early stages. He has apologized for his less-than-robust defense of Anita Hill during Clarence Thomas' Supreme Court confirmation hearing in 1991. He has traveled the country in support of Democratic candidates. And so on.

What's so interesting about the CNN poll is that it not only shows why Biden is clearly a top-tier candidate if he runs for president but it also reveals his potential Achilles' heel in that race.

When asked whether "the country would be governed better or governed worse if more women were in political office," almost two-thirds of Americans (64%) said the country would be better off with more women in office. Just 10% said things would be worse with more women in elected office, while 16% said it wouldn't make much difference.

Why is that relevant to Biden? Because he is a 75-year-old white man considering a run for president amid the #metoo movement and a cultural awakening about the boorish -- and in some cases criminal -- behavior by men toward women in the workplace.

That a large majority of people believe the country would be better off with more women running things suggests a major opening exists for a female politician to make a very credible run for the Democratic nomination in 2020.

At the moment, none of the female candidates who might run are even close to as well known as Biden. One example: More than half of the country -- 55% -- didn't know enough about New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand to offer an opinion about her in the new CNN poll.

But, it's 2017. Which means Gillibrand, who has become a leading voice of the #metoo movement in Congress, has plenty of time to get better known and to challenge the likes of Biden for the nomination.

That is a worry for another day for Biden and his allies, however. Today they will revel in his popularity and use those positive numbers to build buzz for a 2020 bid.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 312608

Reported Deaths: 7221
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21429257
Hinds20256414
Harrison17776308
Rankin13539278
Jackson13395246
Madison10051217
Lee9956173
Jones8364163
Forrest7633152
Lauderdale7215240
Lowndes6359144
Lamar620286
Lafayette6162118
Washington5320133
Bolivar4796132
Oktibbeha460398
Panola4545104
Pearl River4495145
Marshall4387103
Warren4368120
Pontotoc419372
Monroe4089133
Union408776
Neshoba4028176
Lincoln3939110
Hancock376686
Leflore3484125
Sunflower335290
Tate331684
Pike3290105
Scott314873
Alcorn310768
Yazoo310269
Itawamba299377
Copiah295865
Coahoma293979
Simpson293788
Tippah287268
Prentiss278560
Marion268680
Leake264973
Wayne262241
Grenada259985
Adams259882
Covington256281
Newton246961
George246748
Winston226981
Tishomingo225067
Jasper220748
Attala214273
Chickasaw207057
Holmes188672
Clay184654
Stone181433
Clarke178179
Tallahatchie177840
Calhoun169532
Yalobusha162936
Smith162034
Walthall133745
Greene130233
Lawrence128223
Noxubee126834
Montgomery126742
Perry126038
Amite123442
Carroll121628
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis106932
Tunica104626
Claiborne102130
Benton99025
Humphreys96133
Kemper95628
Franklin83323
Quitman79616
Choctaw75818
Wilkinson66830
Jefferson65428
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 528784

Reported Deaths: 10913
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson762251516
Mobile40864804
Madison34569501
Tuscaloosa25646451
Montgomery24264585
Shelby23355246
Baldwin20993306
Lee15800168
Calhoun14457312
Morgan14250279
Etowah13796352
Marshall12166222
Houston10506280
Elmore10017205
Limestone9935150
Cullman9617193
St. Clair9584237
Lauderdale9397238
DeKalb8813185
Talladega8183175
Walker7205279
Autauga6910107
Jackson6793110
Blount6621135
Colbert6282134
Coffee5491115
Dale4810111
Russell437938
Chilton4244111
Franklin423882
Covington4105117
Tallapoosa4004150
Escambia392675
Chambers3545123
Dallas3536150
Clarke350360
Marion3092100
Pike309177
Lawrence299698
Winston273572
Bibb259763
Marengo248564
Geneva247075
Pickens233559
Barbour230256
Hale221776
Butler215469
Fayette211962
Henry188544
Cherokee183845
Randolph179241
Monroe176240
Washington166839
Macon158649
Clay153356
Crenshaw151657
Cleburne148341
Lamar141234
Lowndes138453
Wilcox126528
Bullock122941
Conecuh110028
Perry107526
Coosa106828
Sumter104132
Greene92234
Choctaw60324
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